"But the Israelites did not attack them, because the leaders of the assembly had sworn an oath to them by the Lord, the God of Israel. The whole assembly grumbled against the leaders...."
1. What had happened in chapter 8 in the campaign to conquer Canaan? Read 9:1-2. What was the survival strategy of the Canaanite kings west of the Jordan?
2. Read verses 3-6. Where was Gibeon? Why didn't they join all the other kings in the war against Israel? What was their survival strategy?
3. Read verses 7-13. What was the Israelites' first suspicion? Why should they not make a treaty with the inhabitants of Canaan? How did the Gibeonites flatter Joshua? How did they trick him?
4. Read verses 14-15. How did the Israelites check out the Gibeonites' story? What were the consequences of Joshua's failure to pray? What does this reveal about him? What was the content of the treaty Joshua made?
5. Read 9:16-21. What did the Israelites do when they discovered that they had been tricked? Why did the Israelite soldiers not attack the Gibeonite cities? When the whole assembly wanted to destroy the Gibeonites, what did the leaders decide? Why? What does this show about them?
6. Read verses 22-27. What did Joshua decide to do with the Gibeonites? What was their confession of faith? What does it mean that they were under a curse? What can we learn from the Gibeonites?